Operation People, Summarised by Centrist
Concerns have been raised about the influence of the transnational organization, Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD), on New Zealand.
The ISD, based in London, Germany, France, and the United States, operates similarly to an intelligence community, but without the same legal boundaries. This raises worries about potential surveillance on New Zealand citizens. Efforts are being made to obtain reports produced by the ISD regarding New Zealand.
The ISD’s strategy involves shaping narratives and manipulating various sectors, including government, media, and the private sector, to further its agenda. Policy briefings, media contacts, and cross-border networks are utilized to exert influence and enhance global capabilities. The organization’s focus appears to center around right-wing extremism, prompting concerns about potential bias and the labeling of dissenting views as disinformation.
Government engagement with the ISD includes contracting the organization for reports on topics related to right-wing extremism, disinformation, and hate speech. The concern lies in the potential misuse of terms like “disinformation” to dismiss viewpoints based on personal biases rather than factual accuracy.
The role of the media is also highlighted, as its focus on right-wing extremism may overshadow the rise of left-wing extremism and its potential for violence. And the involvement of government, state-funded media, and the private sector in advancing ideological objectives is emphasized, underscoring the need for independent news sources not influenced by government funding.